Introduction: Prop Quiver, Bow, and Arrows

Whether you’re dressing up as Merida for Halloween or cosplaying as Legolas at Comic Con, here’s an easy (and pretty cheap) way to make a prop bow and a quiver full of arrows for all your costume needs!


General Tools:

  • Duct tape
  • Hot glue gun and plenty of glue
  • Scissors
  • Exacto knife
  • Hand saw or serrated pocket knife (optional)

Materials for the Quiver:

  • 2 empty Pringles cans
  • 1 yard faux leather vinyl (we got ours on Amazon)
  • 2 brown belts (available at thrift stores)

Materials for the Bow:

  • Large piece of cardboard at least 30 inches high and 20 inches wide
  • Brown duct tape or electrical tape
  • Craft cord or twine (3 yards)
  • Wooden ruler or paint stirring stick

Materials for the Arrows:

  • 6 dowel rods at least 24 inches
  • 6 pencil eraser tips
  • 6 ballpoint pens
  • Cardstock or poster paper


(a) Using your exacto knife, cut off the base of one Pringles can (around ¼ inch). The cut should be made as straight as possible so that the resulting cylinder can balance vertically.

(b) Cut off the top edge of the other can using the same method, removing the bulky silver rim (around ¼ inch).

(c) Take the Pringles can from Step 1a and stack it on top of the can from Step 1b.

(d) Duct tape the two cylinders together. Make sure to leave as few wrinkles as possible so that the cylinder will appear smooth once covered in faux leather.

Step 2: Covering the Main Body of the Quiver With Faux Leather

(a) Measure and mark a piece of leather vinyl to be about 11x21 inches, making sure that it’s large enough to cover the whole quiver with an inch or two to spare on each side.

(b) Using the scissors, cut the leather to those measurements.

(c) Using the hot glue gun, make a line of hot glue lengthwise along the edge of the leather and place the quiver on top of it. It should be centered. Make sure to leave about an inch and a half of vinyl above and below the ends of the cans.

(d) Begin to roll the quiver, wrapping it in the vinyl and using another line of hot glue every couple of inches. Keep the vinyl tight against the Pringles canisters!

(e) When you reach the last few inches of the vinyl, fold over ½ inch of the ragged edge of the vinyl towards the Pringles can. This should leave a rounded edge to the leather.

(f) Use hot glue to secure the rounded edge of the vinyl to the quiver, so that the body of the quiver is completely covered in vinyl.

Step 3: Covering the Top and Bottom of the Quiver

(a) Fold the ½ in vinyl overhang down into the top of the can.

(b) Use the hot glue to secure the excess vinyl inside the can. This may be easiest if you place glue along the inside edge of the vinyl, and then press it down into the can all at once.

(c) Fold the vinyl down around the bottom of the can.

(d) Secure it with hot glue. Don’t worry too much about how it looks, it will be covered later.

(e) Cut a circular piece out of the leftover scrap vinyl. This should be slightly larger than the base of the cylinder, with a diameter of about 4 inches.

(f) Hot glue the scrap to the bottom of the cylinder.

(g) Glue the edges of the scrap vinyl up onto the sides of the quiver (they will be hidden later). It may be helpful to cut small slits into the edges of the leather to make it easier to glue up the sides without bulging.

Step 4: Adding the Thrift Store Belts

(a) Choose which belt will function as a strap, and which will serve as decorative lining on the quiver.

(b) Decide how long you want the strap to be in order to fit comfortably over your shoulder.

(c) Cut off the edges of the strap belt, trimming it to the desired length and removing the buckle.

(d) Glue one end of the strap to the bottom of your quiver. The end of the strap should be glued pointing toward the top of the quiver so that the strap will continue down off the bottom. (See picture for reference.)

(e) Glue the other end of the strap on the inside of the top opening of the quiver, just below the edge of the leather vinyl. Make sure the strap is not twisted around before gluing! For extra security, you can also place duct tape over the glued portion on the inside.

(f) Wrap the decorative belt around the circumference of the quiver and mark the length required to encircle it.

(g) Using that measurement, cut two lengths from the belt, each just long enough to wrap entirely around the circumference of the quiver.

(h) Glue one belt strip along the bottom of the quiver, lining up the point where the two edges meet with the folded edge of vinyl. This should hide the glued up edges of the scrap vinyl on the bottom of your quiver, as well as the end of your strap.

(i) Glue the other strip along the top of the quiver, again lining up the point where the two edges meet with the folded edge of vinyl, and you’re done with the quiver!


(a) On each dowel rod, mark the desired length for an arrow. We recommend around 24 inches, long enough for the arrows to stick out when placed in the quiver.

(b) Using a hand saw or serrated pocket knife (if you don’t have either, an exacto blade may also work), cut the dowel rods to the desired length.

Step 6: The Nock and the Arrowhead

(a) Use an exacto blade to cut a small v-shaped notch into the top of the erasers; this will be the nock of the arrow.

(b) Slide a notched eraser onto one end of each dowel rod (note: if the dowel rods are too small to fit securely, you can use hot glue to secure the eraser).

(c) Unscrew the tip of each ballpoint pen

(d) Hot glue one pen tip onto the other end of each dowel rod, creating a small arrowhead.

Step 7: The Fletching

(a) For the fletching, draw out a design on the paper/cardstock (see picture for a possible design) and cut them out, three for each arrow.

(b) Hot glue three fletchings lengthwise onto the end of the arrow closest to the nock, evenly spaced around the dowel rod, and your arrows are done!


(a) Cut a 30-inch strip out of your piece of cardboard; on one side, it should be 1 ½ inches wide, and on the other end (centered) it should be one inch wide. The goal is to create a piece that’s wider on one end. Using an exacto knife may be preferable to scissors, though both can work.

(b) Use the first piece as a stencil to cut out 9 more identical pieces.

Step 9: Taping the Pieces Together

(a) Take two cardboard pieces, match up the wide edges, and duct tape them together. Try to avoid wrinkles. Do likewise to the others, creating five taped pairs.

(b) Stack the five taped pairs on top of each other. Take the ruler/stirring stick and insert it in the middle of the pairs, where the hand grip of the bow will be.

(c) With the ruler in the center to provide some stability, duct tape the pairs and the ruler together in the center.

(d) Starting at the center, wrap the combined pieces of cardboard and ruler in the brown tape tightly; minimize wrinkles, although avoiding them completely will be impossible. We recommend placing a rubber band around the smaller edges of the cardboard to hold them together while you tape. When you reach one end, remove the rubber band and make sure all the cardboard is covered; it’s fine if you leave a little extra tape on the end.

(e) Return to the center and wrap the other half in the same manner.

(f) Cut off any extra tape at the narrow ends of the bow.

Step 10: Adding the Bowstring

(a) About an inch from the end of the bow, cut small notches on both sides to create a place for the bowstring. Repeat on the other end of the bow.

(b) Tie one end of your twine around one end of the bow, securing it in the notches.

(c) Bending the bow slightly (or as much as desired), extend the string down the length of the bow and tie it on the other end, likewise snug inside the notches. With both ends tied, the bow should be slightly bent.

(d) Cut off any excess string if desired, and your project is complete!